The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has issued notifications to implement the Pakistan Single Window project from July 1, 2021 to pave the way for ease in trading activities of the country.
The PSW will bring an annual savings of $500 million and reduce will cargo clearance time from days to hours by integrating 75 regulatory departments including “customs, banks, port authorities, shipping companies, and brokers etc. An independent authority will manage the PSW which will be pivotal in unlocking Pakistan’s potential to become a hub for international transit and trade.
The FBR has issued SROs just five days before the execution of this Pakistan Single Window international project from July 1, 2021.
According to the SRO 788(I)/2021 issued by the FBR, on Friday, the FBR has announced that a facility to be known as the Pakistan Single Window be established to facilitate efficient imports, exports, international transit and matters ancillary thereto, across Pakistan’s territory and notified international borders and the said Pakistan Single Window shall use any technological means available or made available in future, for such purposes from the date of coming into force of the Act.
As per SRO 770 (I)/2021, Secretariat of the Pakistan Single Window will be established at the FBR (Revenue Division) with sub-offices at Karachi and Lahore.
The Program Management Office of Pakistan Single Window, FBR shall be the interim Secretariat of the Pakistan Single Window.
The federal government has allocated work of the Pakistan Single Window to the Revenue Division.
In this connection, the FBR has issued SRO 796(1)/2021, here on Friday.
Another SRO of the FBR has specified that the Pakistan Single Window Act, 2021 shall come into force on July 1, 2021. Any action taken under any other law for the time being in force, for the implementation of the Act or anything ancillary thereto, shall be deemed to have lawfully been taken from the date of coming into force of such other laws, it added.
According to a notification issued by the FBR here on Friday, the federal government has constituted and confer powers upon the Governing Council of Pakistan Single Window, which shall be headed by Federal Minister-in-Charge for Finance and Revenue; Secretary, Ministry of Commerce as Member; Secretary, Ministry of National Food Security and Research as Member; Secretary, Ministry of Maritime Affairs as Member; Secretary, Ministry of National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination as Member; Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology as Member; Secretary, Ministry of Narcotics Control as Member; Additional Secretary (Economic Affairs), Prime Minister Secretariat as Member; Member Customs (Operations), Federal Board of Revenue as Member and Secretary to the Governing Council; and Chief Executive Officer of the Operating Entity as Member.
In addition to above, four additional members who are specialists in areas related to international trade, logistics, information and communication technology and corporate governance shall be included from private sector upon recommendations of the chairperson.
The Governing Council shall perform such functions as are assigned to it under the Act or rules made thereunder.
Under SRO 791(1)/2021, the federal government has designated Pakistan Customs as the Lead Agency.
Member (Customs Operations) of the FBR shall act as the ex-officio secretary to the Governing Council of Pakistan Single Window.
He would maintain records of proceedings of the Governing Council and timely communicate the same to the relevant other government agencies (OGAs), Pakistan Customs, operating entity, any government departments, individuals and entities concerned.
He would also carry out other functions mentioned in the notification.
Under an SRO 795(I)/2021, the federal government has delegated all its powers to the Governing Council of the Pakistan Single Window, except powers to make rules and replacement of the lead agency.
Any notifications, orders, directives or regulations etc., issued by the Governing Council under such delegated powers shall be laid before the Federal Cabinet within 120 days of issuance of such notifications, orders, directives or regulations etc, as the case may be.
The Governing Council with prior approval of its chairperson, may through its secretary, place any matter before the Federal Government for making decisions regarding implementation of the Act.
As per SRO 793(I)/2021, the prime minister has appointed the special judges Customs and Taxation to be the special judges for trying offences under the provisions of the Pakistan Single Window Act, in their respective jurisdictions, in addition to their own duties
Through another notification, Lead Agency (customs) has designated Pakistan Single Window, incorporated under the Companies Act, 2017 as the operating entity.
The operating entity shall perform such functions and be entrusted with such responsibilities as are assigned to it under the Act, rules and regulations issued thereunder and/or contained in the memoranda of understanding signed by the operating entity with the Governing Council and with the Lead Agency or as specified in its own memorandum of association under the Companies Act, 2017.
Source: Pro Pakistani